Sunday, June 21, 2009

Why Japanese textiles?

I frequently get asked where my fascination with Japanese textiles came from. I was not taught much about Asian art in school--we focused mainly on European art movements when we did have any art history and the social studies classes never taught much about Asia either. When I went to IU to study to be an art teacher, even though it was a mere 45 minutes north of my hometown, it was like going to a whole new world. The libraries there became my favorite place to hang out and the bookstores had those great bargain bins!

It was in one of the bargain bins my freshman year (1982--you do the math how long ago that was) that I found the book that started this journey towards learning what I could about Japanese textiles. "Opulence The Kimonos and Robes of Itchiku Kubota" was in the bargain bin for $15.00.

Not a lot by today's standards, but for a struggling college student on a budget, it was a bit of a stretch. I had to have it though as I looked through the pages and fell in love the beauty of the kimonos. I was filled with awe at how they could create such beauty on cloth. This began my journey to learn how and it is an ongoing one.

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